Hi, Everybody! Welcome to my Health, Happiness, and Skillful Living blog. I’ll be sharing information about various aspects of life enhancement as well as reflecting on my own journey toward optimal health, enhanced fitness, and more consistent mindfulness, compassion, kindness and inner peace. Today, the focus is on weight control: managing food addition and emotional eating.

Yes, I recently purchased an entire cake and brought it home. That was not an OK thing for me to do…because I’m a sugar addict. Cake, pie, cookies, ice cream, etc., are to me what beer, scotch, vodka, etc., are to an alcoholic. One slice, piece, or scoop makes me want another…and another after that. As long as I stay away from sweets, I don’t usually crave them as I once did. But I’ve learned the hard way that under certain circumstances, my sugar lust will come roaring back.

Three years ago, I lost 65 pounds after having been overweight for most of my life. Finally getting out of fat jail was an absolute miracle. I have no intention of going back to the slammer.

So why did I buy that cake? Three reasons: The first is that I broke one of my skinny rules – I let myself get really hungry. When I’m hungry past a certain point, I become obsessed with how wonderful a certain dessert would taste and how good eating it would make me feel. The second reason is that in addition to being hungry I was tired, another dangerous state for an addict. The third reason, feeling I deserved a reward for getting through a stressful day, completed the addiction-relapse trifecta.

So I bought the cake, and a chocolate croissant, too.  I ate the croissant in the car and a couple pieces of the cake when I got home. The good news here is that I did not prepare a meal and eat the cake on top of it; I ate the cake instead of a meal. Never eating dessert on top of a meal is another skinny rule that has served me well.

I weighed myself the next morning, as I do every morning (another skinny rule), and I was up a p0und and a quarter. Sugar binges do that. You gain a little actual fat weight and a lot of water weight, which is just as tough to get off as fat weight. I figure a week and-a-half of abstaining from anything sweet or starchy will do it though.

I also threw the cake in the trash, a act of self-love which would have been impossible for me three years ago.

Here’s the takeaway: When you fall off the sensible eating wagon, take action right away. Weigh yourself to assess the damage, then repair the damage immediately. I now love myself enough to do that. Do you?